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Knights climb to No. 1 in WGCA national rankings

October 3, 2018 at 12:19 pm
Alyssa Akiyama, Alexis Chan, Abby Euyang, Ayumi Sakamoto, Ziyi Wang, women's golf, 2018-10-03
Alyssa Akiyama, Alexis Chan, Abby Euyang, Ayumi Sakamoto, Ziyi Wang, women's golf, 2018-10-03
Photo: David Pape

WGCA National Rankings

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. – The Carleton College women’s golf team was ranked No. 9 in the preseason rankings, but after putting together an undefeated fall season, the Knights shot up to the No. 1 spot in the Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) Division III rankings.

Carleton now sits in a tie atop the rankings with Washington University in St. Louis, which opened the year ranked No. 8. Five teams received first-place votes, and the Knights and Bears totaled 290 points in the WGCA’s second poll of the year. George Fox University is No. 3, while Williams College and DePauw University round out the top five.

Carleton won its first four events of the year en route to the No. 1 ranking. Voting was concluded before the Knights closed out their dominating victory—by an amazing 66 strokes—at the MIAC Championships on Monday.

Four different Knights have posted the team’s best finish at different tournaments this fall, including Ziyi Wang (Sr./Beijing City, China/Lighthouse Christian Academy), who was the MIAC medalist and leads the team with a 74.7 scoring average during the fall.

Ayumi Sakamoto (Sr./Honolulu, Hawaii/ʻIolani School) owns a 75.8 scoring average and won the Division III Classic one week after sharing the top spot on the podium at the Wartburg Fall Invite with Abby Euyang (So./Seattle, Wash./Lakeside).

Alyssa Akiyama (Jr./Terrace Park, Ohio/Seven Hills School) finished first at the St. Kate’s Fall Invitational and owns a 76.3 scoring average, just ahead of Euyang at 76.4.

Kristin Miyagi (Fy./Honolulu, Hawaii/'Iolani School) and Alexis Chan (So./Castle Rock, Colo./Rock Canyon) have also appeared in the Carleton lineup multiple times this season and own scoring averages of 77.8 and 78.0, respectively. Chan finished fifth at the MIAC Championships to join Wang, Akiyama, Euyang, and Sakamoto on the All-Championships Team.

Carleton’s fall season has concluded, and the Knights will return to action during Spring Break 2019. By winning the MIAC Championships, the Knights have already secured themselves a return trip to the NCAA Championships. The squad finished seventh in 2017 and sixth in 2018.